The Sorcerer's Apprentice
A new Disney and Bruckheimer production is more likely to bore than entertain
The combination of big-budget producer Jerry Bruckheimer and deep-pocketed studio Disney bore attractive if banal fruit with the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, but the muddle-headed fantasy The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is more likely to make audiences want to put a match to Nicolas Cage’s hair extensions than sit through another similar movie.
Cribbed thematically from the ‘brooms and buckets’ sequence of Walt Disney’s Fantasia, Jon Turteltaub’s film follows the usual ‘dweeby twit discovers he’s the chosen one’à la Harry Potter. After an uninspired preamble establishing Balthazar Blake (Nicolas Cage) as a master sorcerer, the narrative picks up when nerdy physics student Dave (Jay Baruchel) stumbles into Blake’s ongoing conflict with rival Maxim Horvath (played by rote Alfred Molina).
The notion of a novice intervening in dueling magicians sounds like fun, but The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is more focused on Dave’s sappy romance with pert disc jockey Becky (Teresa Palmer). This is Cage’s seventh collaboration with Bruckheimer, and his third with National Treasure director Turteltaub, who dutifully orchestrates a limp pantomime. Dry and dusty when it should be sparkling, there’s precious little magic here.
General release, Wed 11 Aug.